6 Types of Memory LossPosted on April 2, 2014 by ElderCare Resources in Blog, Education, Independent Living, Memory Loss
Where did you leave your keys? Or why did you walk into the living room? Both of these are very common lapses that usually stem from lack of attention or focus.
Memory Tip: Focus on what you are doing or thinking in any given moment, and you will stop a lot of these lapses. If you find yourself in the middle of one, retracing your steps, mentally or actually, can help.
This is the frustrating tip-of-the-tongue moment. You know the word you are trying to say, but you can’t quite retrieve it from memory.
Memory Tip: Review mentally or even write down the elements or facts of a story or event before you talk about them. If you find yourself stuck in the moment, try to remember other details about the event, name or place, which often will trigger the memory you are searching for.
This is when you accurately remember most of an event or other chunk of information, but confuse certain key details. Example: A friend tells you over dinner at a restaurant that she is taking out a second mortgage on her home. Later, you recall the gist of her news but think she told you during a phone conversation.
Memory Tip: Draw on mental cues from an experience or event to trigger an accurate recollection. Focus on piecing together specific details of the memory such as the time. Place, the people you saw, the reason for the event, topics of conversation.
4. Fade Out
The brain is always sweeping out old memories to make room for new ones, the more time that passes between an experience and when you want to recall it, the more likely you are to have forgotten much of it. So while it is typically fairly easy to remember what you did over the past several hours, recalling the same events and activities a month, or a year ago is more difficult. This is the basic “use-it-or-lose-it” feature of memory known as transience is normal at all ages.
Memory Tip: Studies show that events we discuss, ponder over, record or rehearse are recalled in the most detail and for longest periods of time. So one of the best ways to remember events and experiences whether every day or life changing is to talk or think about them.
You were introduced to someone and seconds later you can’t recall his/her name. Aging changes the strengths of the connections between neurons in the brain. New information can bump out other items from short-term memory unless it is used over and over again.
Memory Tip: This type of short-term memory loss can be avoided by focusing in any given moment and eliminating distractions.
6. Muddled Multitasking
This is when the number of things you can do effectively at one time diminishes. For example, maybe you can’t watch the news and talk on the phone at the same time anymore.
Studies show that the older we get, the more the brain has to exert effort to maintain focus. Further, it takes longer to get back to an original task after an interruption.
Memory Tip: Avoid interruptions and concentrate on one task at a time. According to a 2009 Stanford University study, this advice holds true at any age because most multitaskers are not truly focused. “People who are regularly bombarded with several streams of electronic information do not pay attention, control their memory or switch from one job to another as well as those who prefer to complete one task at a time,’ the researchers concluded.
Published: Advanced Senior Solutions